The NBA playoffs have ended in both conference’s now, and here are the match-ups and predictions for the Western Conference!
1 San Antonio Spurs vs. 8 Memphis Grizzlies
San Antonio has dominated the West all year, displaying a 61-21 record. On the other end, Memphis fought long and hard for that 8th seed. The Grizzlies have had quality wins throughout the year, including one against Boston. They are a hard-working team, that doesn’t want to give up until the last second. They will surely make the Spurs work for their four wins, though do not expect an upset.
San Antonio takes it.
Los Angeles Lakers vs. 7 New Orleans Hornets
The Lakers could not have gotten an easier opponent. The Hornets are the most vulnerable in the Western Conference. This is because ever since David West got hurt (who is a key player in the Hornets offense and defense), the whole team seems done with everything.
When the Spurs chose not to start their big guns (Manu, Parker, Duncan) against the Lakers in the second-to-last game of the season, the Lakers had caught a huge break. This then kept them in the number two spot above the Mavericks.
3 Dallas Mavericks vs. 6 Portland Trail Blazers
Dallas has always seemed to be at the top, but the Lakers are always there in the way. Even with perennial stars such as Dirk Nowitzki and Jason Kidd, their offense and defense is never enough.
On the other end, Portland has been busy all season. As the team acquired Gerald Wallace from Charlotte, their offense reached new levels, allowing key players such as Brandon Roy to come off the bench, and Rudy Fernandez to step up his game as well. Portland has great potential to win and most likely will against the struggling Mavs.
4 Oklahoma City Thunder vs. 5 Denver Nuggets
This series will be one of the most interesting series of the playoffs. Oklahoma City and Denver have both been influenced greatly after the trade deadline. After acquiring big man Kendrick Perkins from the Celtics, the Thunder have also went out and inked other key presences like Nazr Mohammed.
Denver on the other hand traded away star forward Carmelo Anthony and guard Chauncy Billups, while recieving much young talent like Raymond Felton and Danilo Gallinari. Since Denver the blockbuster deal, they have done great, scoring more points with their current lineup than they had before.
Arguably the most difficult series to call in all of the playoffs, this series will not fail to impress fans of the NBA.